For Immediate Release - June 05, 2008

Four Projects, 275 New Jobs, $68.5 Million In Private Investment

Economic Assistance Coordinating Council approves economic development projects and helps Massachusetts manufacturers

BOSTON - June 5, 2008 - Today Economic Assistance Coordinating Council (EACC) Co-Chair George Ramirez announced the approval of certified tax incremental financed (TIF) projects in Boylston, Lowell, Quincy, and Westwood that collectively create 275 new jobs, retain over 250 existing jobs, and bring $68.5 million in private investment to Massachusetts.

"We are exciting that these 4 projects represent agreements between local municipalities and private companies to strengthen the conditions for job growth and private investment in key areas of Massachusetts," said George Ramirez, co-chair of the EACC. "While we are proud of all 4 certified projects, we are especially thrilled that 2 projects represent manufacturing companies that have started right here in Massachusetts and have decided to stay and grow here in the state."

Rand-Whitney Industries, Inc. and Rand-Whitney Container, LLC in Boylston, a corrugated container manufacturer, was founded in 1938 with a single plant in central Massachusetts. This company will be relocating part of its Worcester operation to the town of Boylston and will create 40 new jobs and invest $45 million in private funding to build its new facility. Rand-Whitney Industries is 1 of the certified projects that in part of the manufacturing sector.

Romanow, Inc, in Westwood, is another corrugated container company that is family-run. It plans to grow their Massachusetts based business by creating 15 new jobs and investing $3.5 million in its current facility.

In addition to these two manufacturers, the EACC approved the Western Canal Economic Opportunity Area in Lowell, as well as the Nobis Engineering/Nokode Holdings, LLC in Lowell. This landscape architectural, civic engineering and professional services company will be redeveloping a building in an old mill site in Lowell that will be certified by U.S. Green Building's Council Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) as an energy efficient building. The Nobis Engineering/Nokode Holdings plans to relocate 30 full time employees to the Lowell facility, create 20 new full-time jobs and invest over $5 million at the site.

Lastly, the UCM/GPF-Harborsouth Project in North Quincy was approved as an Economic Opportunity Area (EOA). This project will make a $15 million private investment to renovate the former BlueCross BlueShield facility, creating the first LEED certificate building in Quincy. As an office facility, Griffith Properties and the Harborsouth Certified Project will create roughly 200 jobs by attracting tenants to the upgraded facility.

Most certified TIF projects are located in Economic Opportunity Areas (EOAs), which are also located within Economic Target Areas (ETA). TIF, EOAs, and ETAs are tools of the Economic Development Incentive Program (EDIP) offering state and/or local tax exemptions for businesses that have secured local municipal agreements to expand or locate in Massachusetts. All tools of the EDIP program require approval of the state's Economic Assistance Coordinating Council (EACC), an eleven member public-private council that meets 8 times per year.

"The EDIP program is yet another way the Patrick administration is enhancing the conditions for business expansion and job growth in the Commonwealth," said Gregory Bialecki, Undersecretary for Business Development. "Massachusetts' economy competiveness will continue to strengthen as we work with local municipalities to attract new businesses and help existing Massachusetts companies expand."

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The Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development is one of eight Secretariats that make up the Governors Cabinet. Under the leadership of Secretary Dan O'Connell, the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development oversees the following undersecretariats: the Departments of Business Development, Housing and Community Development, and Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation.

The Massachusetts Office of Business Development, part of the Department of Business Development, is committed to assisting companies who want to locate, expand, grow, or maintain a presence in Massachusetts. Through six regional offices and five industry specialists, MOBD works with companies and municipalities to help them take advantage of available economic incentive programs. MOBD also assists companies in navigating and accessing the technical, human, financial, training, educational and siting resources necessary to expand or locate in Massachusetts.